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Choosing a Citation Management Tool: Home

Citation Managers

There are many different citation management tools. This guide will give you information about three of them: RefWorks, Zotero, and Mendeley.

All citation managers let you:

  • add citations from databases (PsycINFO; Web of Science; Academic Search Complete, etc)
  • organize your citations
  • add PDF files; annotate PDFs
  • format citations in multiple citation styles
  • format citations in Microsoft Word to create bibliographies
  • share your citations with colleagues / classmates

RefWorks

refworks logo

RefWorks

  • cloud-based, no client download

Tools

  • "Save to RefWorks"  is a bookmarklet for your browser.  Use it to add website references to RefWorks. 
  • "RefWorks Citation Manager" OR "Write-N-Cite" for Microsoft Word is a plugin allowing to you insert/edit citations and create a bibliography as your write.

Access

  • available to UC Merced students, faculty, and staff

Citation Styles

  • Offers thousands of citations styles including Citation Styles Language (CSL) citation styles
  • Edit and save a citation style using the Citation Style Editor

Adding References

  • Drop and drag files; RefWorks will try to extract citation information
  • Export citations from databases
  • Use "Save to RefWorks" bookmarklet
  • Add Manually

Viewing Options

  • Choose a desired Reference view (normal, table, full, or citation view)
  • Click on a citation to load a panel at the right for article details

Organizing References

  • Create projects (upper left)
  • Create folders and sub-folders within projects (side left)

Sharing References

  • Share projects; invite via email
  • Share folders in a project with options to Read, Annotate, or Modify

Linking to Full-Text

  • UC-eLinks link will appear on right-hand panel for references

Creating Bibliographies

  • Use "Create Bibliography" in upper navigation
  • Use tools (see above) in Word or Google docs
 

Highlight: Good for collaboration; easy to learn and use

Lowlight: Working solely in the in the cloud may require some patience especially if uploading multiple PDFs

Zotero

Zotero

  • citation management tool
  • web, desktop, and mobile platforms

Tools

  • easily import citations from academic journals & the web
  • can format citations on Google Docs and Microsoft Word
  • allows for collaboration with team members
  • ZoteroBib provides quick citations 
  • Retraction Watch informs you when articles are retracted

Access

  • free account with 300 MB of storage; purchase premium accounts to access more storage

Citation Styles

  • Offers over 9400 citation styles, in fields from anthropology to zoology
  • Import, edit, and save citation styles

Adding References

  • Drop and drag citation styles; Zotero will try to extract citation information
  • Export citation from databases
  • Import citations from the web
  • Add manually

Viewing Options

  • View references in folders or full library

Organizing References

  • Create folders and sub-folders

Sharing References

  • Share references through groups; invite via email
  • Groups can be open (public), or private

Linking to Full-Text

  • If available Zotero will attempt to download a full-text PDF when importing citations (you can also set Zotero to NOT download full-text PDFs)

Creating Bibliographies

  • Right-click to select citations and click "Create bibliography from items..."
  • Use Zotero's Microsoft Word or Google Doc plugins

 

Highlight: No cost, and includes a robust online community. Zotero can also be used to make quick citations. Includes a "Retraction Watch" feature.

Lowlight: No cost means that there is no designated customer service team.

 

Mendeley

Mendeley

  • citation management and academic networking tool
  • web, desktop, and mobile platforms

Tools

  • Mendeley's Web Importer is a browser extension compatible with most commonly used browsers.  Use it to add website and database references to Mendeley. 
  • Mendeley's Microsoft Word Plugin allows you to insert/edit citations and create a bibliography as your write.

Access

  • free account with 2 GB of storage; purchase premium accounts to access more storage and sharing options

Citation Styles

  • Offers nearly 7,000 of citations styles including Citation Styles Language (CSL) citation styles
  • Import, edit and save a citation style using the Citation Style Editor

Adding References

  • Drop and drag files; Mendeley will try to extract citation information
  • Export citations from databases
  • Use the Web Importer browser extension
  • Create a Watch folder on your computer
  • Add references from Mendeley Web
  • Add Manually

Viewing Options

  • Choose a desired Reference view (table or citation view)
  • Click on a citation to load a panel at the right for article details

Organizing References

  • Create folders and sub-folders 

Sharing References

  • Share references through groups; invite via email
  • Groups can be open (public), private, or invite-only

Linking to Full-Text

  • If available, Mendeley will attempt to download a full-text PDF when importing citations

Creating Bibliographies

  • Right click on citations and select Copy As--> formatted citation
  • Use Mendeley's Microsoft Word Plugin
 

Highlight: Facilitates collaboration and networking; library access and document annotations are synced across platforms

Lowlight: No UC-eLinks integration; a direct export to Mendeley option is not available in most databases

Additional Resources & Notes

The charts below include additional information you can use to compare citation management tools.

Note:

This guide was gratefully inspired by and modeled on the Manage Your Citations (EndNote, RefWorks, Zotero, Mendeley) guide from UC Berkeley's Bioscience, Natural Resources & Public Health Library.